How did I get it: From Penguin and through Netgalley. Sad Monsters comes out on September 27th.
Why did I read it: With a title like this, how could I resist?
How I would rate it: 4 out of 5 stars.
Monsters have it tough. Besides being deeply misunderstood, they suffer from very real problems: Mummies have body image issues, Godzilla is going through an existential crisis, and creatures from the black lagoon face discrimination from creatures from the white lagoon. At heart, these monsters are human; after all, you are what you eat. Quirkily illustrated, Sad Monsters hilariously documents the trials and tribulations of all the undead creatures monster-mad readers have grown to love, from vampires and werewolves, to chupacabras and sphinxes, and even claw-footed bathtubs.
Review: Anything and everything having to do with cryptozoology, horror movies, monster myths/legends, and supernatural people has always fascinated me so this book really appealed to me right off the bat. Frank Lesser did an excellent job referencing all of these things while adding a great deal of humor to the somewhat depressing existence that is being a misunderstood monstrous menace.
Each short essay looks at a different aspects of a monster life such as dating, politics, high school, death, child rearing, and much more. Some of the outcomes are predictable, of course, but I really enjoyed Lesser’s sense of humor and his take on monsters’ personal lives. My favorite parts were “Learning From Your Teleporter Mistakes,” “Groom of Frankenstein,” “Night of the Living,” “Igor’s Resume,” “The Roommate of Dorian Gray,” “Whoa Oh, Here She Comes,” “Van Helsing’s Patient Notes,” “Kid’s Slay the Darndest Things,” and “A Living Dead Will.” All of them relate to what people deal with in the world as it is which only makes the situations all the more amusing. And Willie Real’s illustrations were terrific too.
In conclusion, delightful and a lot of fun. If you love monsters or you’re a fan of humorous essays, or both, you owe it to yourself to read Sad Monsters as soon as possible.